"Should not be missed by anyone
wanting to experience a thoroughly enjoyable delve into history and, more importantly, a great piece of
character acting." musicOMH.com
“A truly remarkable performance.
Roy Dotrice is superb.”
THE DAILY TELEGRAPH
“Delicious, outrageous and incredible. Magically performed by Roy Dotrice.”
“Everything is here – wit, farce, tragedy, pathos, often bawdy, frequently uproariously funny. A truly delightful entertainment. Roy Dotrice is quite magnificent.”
–– DAILY MAIL
Guildford’s Yvonne Arnaud Theatre
27 September 2008
Clwyd Theatr Cymru, Mold
19 September 2008
Victor Hallett for
Brief Lives at the Theatre Royal, Windsor
21 March 2008
Dotrice, 84, revives record-breaking one-man show
27 February 2008
Roy's Brilliant in Brief Lives
22 February 2008
Mid Sussex Times
"Roy Dotrice’s performance is funny, engaging and well planned"
12 February 2008
08 February 2008
If you think tabloid tales
are a modern thing,
Roy Dotrice in the 2008 Revival...
Join John Aubrey, reclusive antiquarian, as he takes you on a
nostalgic journey through history and gives his unique take on
days gone by including all the bits the
books missed out on! Which globe-trotting courtier took a maiden's
honour against a tree?
Which eminent scientist kept a pretty young wench to wait on him?
And which famous playwrights didn't only share a love of writing?
is spared in this stupendous series of anecdotes about the personalities
of his time. Oliver Cromwell, William Shakespeare, Sir Walter Raleigh
and even the Virgin Queen herself are not exempt from Aubrey’s
acerbic and hysterical gossip.
Patrick Garland’s triumphant adaptation of the Memoirs, Miscellanies,
Letters and Jottings of John Aubrey paint a unique portrait of the
time and the inspired use of true theatricality makes this production
This brand new production reunites one of the UK’s leading directors,
Patrick Garland (The Mystery of Charles Dickens, Visiting Mr Green) and
Emmy, Tony and
BAFTA Award Winner, Roy Dotrice (Amadeus, The Best of Friends) who shared the
success of the record-breaking original production which was unanimously proclaimed
as one of the greatest performances in the history of theatre on both sides of
- excerpt from the Richmond Theatre
28th March 2008 By Nancy Groves
13th MARCH 2008 By Francine Wolfisz
WEDNESDAY, 30TH JANUARY 2008
Spectator's Tim Walker talks to the theatrical veterans Roy Dotrice
and Patrick Garland about their long-awaited return
to the work of
Roy's star quality
09 March 2008
Mandrake salutes Roy Dotrice, who, after falling from the stage during a rehearsal for Brief Lives at the Mercury Theatre in Colchester and passing out, insisted on going on that night.
At 84, that's not bad, and now the trouper is bringing the revival - it got him into the Guinness Book of Records as the longest-running one-man show - to the Theatre Royal, Windsor from March 17. "They just don't make 'em like that any more," says his proud director, Patrick Garland.
- excerpt by Tim Walker with Richard
Eden for The
Dotrice opens Brief Lives at Criterion
25 February 2008
Roy Dotrice took a step to Guinness world record fame on 25 February 1969, when the award-winning actor opened in Brief Lives at the Criterion. His 400 performances at this venue, combined with other touring credits, saw Dotrice claim a world record for most solo performances with a total of 1,782.
Brief Lives had premiered two years earlier at the Hampstead theatre and spent two seasons on Broadway before making its West End bow at the Criterion. Dotrice played 17th century gossip John Aubrey, who shared his views and titbits of information about many important Elizabethan figures with the audience. Among those remembered anecdotally were Oliver Cromwell, William Shakespeare, Walter Raleigh and even Elizabeth I. The piece was adapted by Patrick Garland from The Memoirs, Miscellanies, Letters And Jottings Of John Aubrey.
More than forty years after the production was originally seen, Dotrice, now into his 80s, has revived the show and is touring once more. Brief Lives can be seen in Richmond this March.
Dotrice, born in Guernsey in 1923, was introduced to the idea of performing when he was shot down during World War II, taken as a prisoner of war and found himself entertaining fellow POWs to lift spirits. On his release, he pursued his acting dream, working at various rep companies before joining the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre (later to become the Royal Shakespeare Company) in 1957. He stayed with the company for nine years, honing his craft alongside actors such as Paul Robeson, Sam Wanamaker, Peter O’Toole, Charles Laughton, Albert Finney and Laurence Olivier. He also introduced baseball to the cricket-loving company.
Dotrice’s career has included award wins at the 1969 BAFTAs for Misleading Cases and the 2000 Tony Awards for his performance in A Moon For The Misbegotten on Broadway. More recently Dotrice returned to Hampstead in 2006 to star in Best Of Friends opposite Patricia Routledge and Michael Pennington, for which he received a Laurence Olivier Award nomination. He was given an OBE in the 2008 New Year Honours List.
– MA, for the Official London Theatre Guide
Dotrice brings Aubrey back to London
07 Jan 2008
Forty years after he first originated the role in the West End, veteran
actor Roy Dotrice, recently awarded an OBE in the Queen’s New
Year Honours list, is to revive his performance as John Aubrey in Brief
Lives at Richmond theatre in March as part of a short UK tour.
Dotrice first played the role in Patrick Garland’s one-man play
at Hampstead Theatre Club in 1967. Following a Broadway run it opened
at the West End’s Criterion theatre in 1968. Now Dotrice recreates
his performance as reclusive antiquarian Aubrey, who takes audiences
on a nostalgic journey through history, relating a series of anecdotes
about everyone from Cromwell to Shakespeare, Raleigh to Elizabeth I.
Dotrice was last on the London stage in 2006, appearing alongside Patricia
Routledge in Hugh Whitemore’s The Best Of Friends at Richmond
and Hampstead. In addition to Brief Lives his extensive West End credits
include Great Expectations, The Passion Of Dracula, Suez, Mother Adam
and Oliver!, while on Broadway he starred in Mister Lincoln, A Life,
Kingdoms, Hay Fever, The Homecoming and Eugene O’Neill’s
A Moon For The Misbegotten in 2000, for which he won a Tony Award.
His film and UK television credits include Amadeus, The Cutting Edge,
The Scarlet Letter, Life Begins and The Caretaker.
This new stage production of Brief Lives is expected to open in the
West End following a five-venue UK tour which ends at Richmond from
- excerpt by CB for The Official
London Theatre Guide
Roy Dotrice Sets New Records in
Brief Lives Revival
03 January 2008
More than 40 years after he originated the role, Roy Dotrice - who
was awarded an OBE this week in the New Year’s Honours List (See News,
2 Jan 2008) - will revive his performance as 17th-century author and antiquarian
John Aubrey in the one-man play Brief Lives. The production, which
is once again directed
by the play’s author
Patrick Garland, opens on 7 February 2008 at Colchester’s
Mercury Theatre ahead of a brief regional tour and planned West
End transfer. ...Following Colchester, Brief Lives visits Brighton,
Lincoln and Richmond,
its tour schedule concludes on 29 March 2008. Dates and venue
details for the West End run have not yet been announced. The production
is designed by Simon Higlett, with lighting by Colin Wood, and is presented
by Ian Fricker and Chris Moreno.
- excerpt by Terri Paddock for What'sOnStage